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The Right Tender. What to Pay Attention to When Answering One

July 20, 2020
5 min read
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The Right Tender. What to Pay Attention to When Answering One

The Right Tender. What to Pay Attention to When Answering One

If tendering were to be summarized in one saying, that would probably have to be “choose your battles wisely”, and for good reason. There are only so many tenders you could be answering at once and with limited resources comes the need to carefully strategize your investments.

Remember to target tenders relevant to your industry and level of expertise. To maximize your chances of winning, we advise evaluating your offer first. In short, there are two main criteria categories you must keep in mind: your technical abilities and the contract’s costs. In this blog post, take a detailed look at these criteria.


A common belief in the tendering world is that the lowest price will often win the tender. Unfortunately, maintaining low costs implies opting for cheaper materials and employing less qualified personnel. Contracting authorities are also aware of this and might be inclined to stay away from an offer that seems too good to be true. Simultaneously, contracts priced too high will have the same repellent effect on buyers. The key takeaway here is: strive for a sustainable cost/quality ratio. Quality is a varying aspect from industry to industry, but the financial estimations are always based on the same whole life cost (WLC) formula involving acquisition, ownership, maintenance, goods disposal, services or works. If your current situation requires you to quote a higher price, explicitly clarify on that. Most often than not, buyers will appreciate your honesty and foresight.

Accreditations and Certifications

For most tenders, certifications are not knockout criteria in themselves, but they help your application stand out among the rest. Certifications become increasingly important as the specificity of the contracted tasks increases, so make sure you mention any relevant qualifications your business has obtained, or that you are in the process of obtaining in your application.


Just as with accreditations or certifications, failing to provide past references of your work does not lead to a tender being disqualified. Presenting such proof, on the other hand, is extremely beneficial to the impression you make on the contracting authority. Make sure to only include references that are related to the current contract’s scope of work.

Past Achievement

Older, more experienced companies have an obvious advantage over smaller ones in this regard. Being able to provide examples of related, successful works your company has fulfilled previously, enhances your application’s credibility.

Tax Clearance Certificate

Attaching a Tax Clearance Certificate to your application reassures the contracting authority that you are in good financial standing to carry out the works. In some cases, buyers will highlight the provision of one such document as a hard requirement for the award criteria.


Risk Assessment

The contracting entity, especially if that happens to be a governmental body, is under great pressure to ensure the delivery of exceptional results as part of the contracted project. Being able to reassure them of your company’s ability to fulfil the task, even under harsh, unexpected conditions offers your application a great advantage over competitors. Including a risk assessment form detailing on your ability to withstand hazards is something you should thus consider when writing your application.

Safety Factors

Regardless of the industry you are active in, showing consideration for the safety of your personnel is always a plus in the eyes of buyers. Fewer accidents lead to a smoother and more efficient working experience. To take your chances of winning the tender up a notch, attach your safety policy to the application.

Environmental Factors

From our personal experience working with tenders, we have noticed more recent contracts put a heightened emphasis not only on the wellbeing of personnel but also of the environment. Global warming and the detrimental effects business activities have on our planet have become hot topics nowadays. Include your environmental protection policy when relevant – if the contracting entity shares your beliefs, be sure doing so will have a positive impact on your application’s evaluation.

Hopefully, with all this knowledge you will be much better equipped to answer future tenders. Get in touch with us or schedule a demo to see how our solution can help you automatize the tendering process.

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